(Gothenburg, Sweden): A ground-breaking study analyzing the effects of toxic chemicals in plastic children’s toys and consumer products on human cells demonstrates that toys made from some recycled plastics are toxic to humans and can significantly contribute to the dioxin daily intake level for children who mouth their toys. The levels of toxic chemicals revealed in all the samples studied were comparable to levels found in hazardous wastes, such as the ash from waste incinerators.
A team of researchers from Arnika, BioDetection Systems, and International Pollutants Elimination Network (IPEN) determined that toys made of black plastic, which is often derived from recycled e-waste plastics with flame retardant chemicals, are toxic to human cells. The study reveals that children mouthing toys made from this plastic are at risk of dangerous health effects from the toxic material. It is the first study to establish the toxic effects of plastic toys made of recycled plastics on human cells.
The Basel Ban Amendment forbids the export of hazardous waste for recycling or disposal from Annex VII countries (OECD Member States, EU Member States or Liechtenstein) to non-Annex VII countries (primarily developing and transition countries). The Ban Amendment benefits all countries. By prohibiting hazardous waste exports from developed countries, the Basel Ban Amendment helps protect developing and transition countries. For developed countries, the Basel Ban Amendment provides incentives for both waste prevention and green design. Currently, there is a large gap between the number of Basel Convention Parties (187) and number of Ban Amendment ratifications.
IPEN Participating Organizations in Australia, Canada, Democratic Republic of Congo, Croatia, Republic of Korea, Mexico, Philippines, Russia, and Senegal also conducted activities to encourage governments to ratify the Ban Amendment. These activities and the Guide are part of IPEN's Toxics-Free Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Campaign, and relate to SDGs 3, 6, 8, 11, 12 and 13. Details about the activities can be found here.